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Green Zone League Articles

MVP's of Week 7 : 2015
By Travis Robbins
Special to gzl-football.com

MVP's of Week 7: 2015


Quarterback: QB Sam Bradford
13 Completions : 21 Attempts : 307 Yards : 3 Touchdowns : 0 Ints : 145.3 QB Rating

Sam Bradford only played about half of the game against the 49ers, yet was able to put up the numbers of a QB that played a great game for all four quarters. With over 300 yards passing on 13 completions, he had over 15 yards per attempt, and nearly 24 yards per completion. The Rams backup QB put up a great performance as well, but not as good as Bradford, who's 13 completions for 3 touchdowns and zero interceptions netted him a 145 QB rating before he went out with an injury.

The Rams beat the 49ers in a close 45-41 game. The Rams put up 18 4th quarter points to come from behind and secure the win.

Unfortunately for the Rams, they are in the NFC West, where all teams except for them have a winning record. Their 3-4 puts them at dead last in their division, but it isn't for a lack of trying. The same record in other divisions would have them near the top of the pack. This was a great victory against the now 4-2 49ers. The Rams have already lost 2 of their divisional games this season, it must have been nice to come away with a victory on one of them.

Halfback: HB Ryan Mathews
32 Rushes : 180 Yards : 5.63 Yards Per Carry : 16 Long : 1 Touchdown

Another Chargers player? One can accuse me of being bias, and it might even hold some weight if you take into account that multiple halfbacks went over the 200 rushing yards this week. So why did I instead pick Ryan Mathews for his second mention at the halfback position? That's because of his 5.63 yards per carry with only a 16 long rushing attempt. This guy was a workhorse throughout the game. The other halfbacks go below the 5 yards per carry when you take out their big run for 80 or so yards. Mathews didn't get one of those and still nearly matched those stats. That's rare.

The Chargers beat the 4-3 Chiefs 27-17. The divisional win was huge for the Chargers who only have an advantage over the Chiefs because of their 2-2 record against division opponents. At 4-3, the Chargers are still neck and neck with the Chiefs. With the Raiders still going strong at 6-0, the real battle in the AFC West will probably be between these two teams for a coveted wild card spot.

Wide Receiver: WR Stephen Hill
9 Catches : 210 Yards : 77 Long : 3 Touchdowns

The Rams five passing touchdowns had to go to someone this week, didn't they? Well, 3 of them went to Stephen Hill. Stephen is a third year player drafted in the middle of the first round. This game helps to get Hill to his best season yet. With only 1,000-1,000 yard seasons over the last two years, he has plenty of room for improvement. More games like this will allow Stephen to earn that draft pick that the Rams spent on him 2 years ago.

Tight End: TE Greg Little
3 Catches : 36 Yards : 2 Touchdowns : 2 Pancakes

The shootout in St. Louis didn't just earn the Rams two spots on this list, but a 49er too. Greg Little didn't have the most productive of games, but he made his catches when they mattered. 3 catches, two of which went for touchdowns puts Greg Little at the top of the list this week for the Tight End Position.

This is his first season with the 49ers after having played with the Packers throughout his first 4 seasons in the GZL. He already has more yardage than he achieved last year with the Packers, but it'll be tough to beat the 567 yards he picked up in 2013 playing for Green Bay. He already has 3 touchdowns on the season, so it's likely that he'll be able to overcome his career best of 4. However, he'll have a long way to go to make this his best season yet.

Offensive Line: LT Marcus McNeill
12 Pancakes : 0 Sacks Allowed

Another Charger? The first five players on this list come from three different teams, and only two separate games. This spot is more than just Marcus McNeill getting the mention. The whole Chargers offensive line performed remarkable this week. HB Mathews stats alone back this up, but when the whole line combines for 56 sacks on the day, you just know that the Chiefs defensive line have a long way to go before they can win the battle at the line of scrimmage against these dominating players for the Chargers. LG Jeremy Zuttah had 11 Pancakes, and TE Vernon Davis had an impressive 10. Since McNeill had 12, he gets the mention, but what's more impressive than McNeill's performance is the combined effort on this whole line. Even their speedster receivers pushed around the Kansas City Chiefs.


Defensive Line: LE Cameron Jordan
5 Tackles : 2 For Loss : 3 Sacks

The Browns defense is starting to come together. They haven't allowed more than 30 points since week 3 and only 10 points this week in Cincinnati. The 3 sacks from Cameron Jordan sure helped matters. The Browns combined got 5 sacks, and Jordan got a majority of them.

Jordan was the sixth pick of the draft in 2011 and since then has had respectable games. He put up 13 sacks twice, once in his rookie season. This season he's had zero sacks in the Browns first 6 games. I had thought at first that the Browns must be playing a 3-4 defense, in which linebackers picked up most of the sacks, but they've remained in 4-3 through this season. They just haven't had any luck in creating a lot of pressure at the defensive line.

Hopefully this is the first game where that changes. The Browns have already have had a good defense this season, if they can start putting more pressure on the quarterback throughout the rest of the season, they might be able to pull together more wins like this one.

The Browns are tied in last place in the AFC North with the Bengals. The Leaders in the division; the Steelers and the Ravens are both at 3-3. It won't take much of an effort to overcome both teams to win the AFC North. It's anybodies game in this weak division, but the Browns are going to have to show more talent on the offensive side of the ball to take this division.

Linebacker: MLB Chris Carter
7 Tackles : 1 For Loss : 1 Sack : 1 Interception for 100 Yards : 2 Deflections : 1 TD

The undefeated Raiders haven't had even one player during the four weeks of this article, but that changes today. MLB Chris Carter had the play of the game in Pittsburgh this week with his interception for 100 yards. The Steelers were at the 1 yard line and thanks to this guy, not only did they not come away with a score, but they allowed the Raiders to take it in for pick six. That isn't the man's only stat either, with 7 Tackles, a sack and 2 deflections, Chris Carter was a large reason the Steelers weren't able to come back from behind. The Raiders offense didn't help of course, but Carter pulled this defense together. Carter has been playing well his whole career, so he'll have to make many more plays to make this his best season yet, but he has plenty of time to make it so.

The Raiders beat the Steelers 35-25 in Pittsburgh, keeping them at the top of the AFC West and undefeated at 6-0.

Defensive Back: FS Kyle Nelson
4 Tackles : 1 Forced Fumble : 2 Interceptions for 25 yards : 1 Deflection

The Buccaneers only had two turnovers all game, and both of them came from this man. Kyle Nelson is a rookie taken as the 16th overall pick. Until this week, he hasn't had an interception all season nor a forced fumble. Yet, this week he gets both. I'm sure Anthony Fernandez is hoping that Nelson has finally caught up to the pace of the GZL, and will keep playing this spectacular.

The Bucs beat the under performing Eagles 34-10 at home, keeping themselves at 5-1 and at the top of the NFC North. The Falcons sit at 0-6, and the Panthers 1-5. Their only actual competition are the 4-3 Saints, but with 2 loses in the last 3 weeks, they too might be falling out of contention

Special Teams:

Kicker: K Nick Folk
5/6 Field Goals : 1/1 Extra Point

I believe this is the first Kicker on my list who didn't make all of his attempts. But with 6 of them, he didn't really need to. 5 field goals made beat out any other kicker this week, and it helps that the Jets would have lost without him.

The Jets scored only one touchdown all game, and that came in the last quarter to help secure the victory. Throughout the game, Folk's foot kept them in the game, and without it, the Jets wouldn't have been able to play from the lead.

The Jets beat the Dolphins 22-19 in the close victory at home. They remain tied in last with the Dolphins in the AFC East at 2-4, but since the Bills, Patriots and Dolphins are all within one game of each other, there is no telling what will happen in the AFC East this season.

Kick Returner: WR Jordan Shipley
5 Attempts : 148 Yards : 29.6 Average : 41 Long

There weren't any return touchdowns this week that I could find, but Jordan Shipley had a good day without one. At nearly 30 yards per return on 5 attempts, Shipley was able to constantly put the Bengals at a decent field position. Unfortunately, their offense never amounted to much in their 23-10 loss.

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